Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Diners may be willing to pay more to eat at 'green' restaurants

08.12.2010
Many U.S. restaurants may be ignoring a desire by American consumers to dine at environmentally friendly restaurants, according to a small exploratory study.

Researchers found that more than 8 out of 10 restaurant patrons surveyed in Columbus said they would be willing to pay more to dine at "green" restaurants. More than 7 out of 10 said it was good for restaurants to protect the environment.

The only problem is that very few restaurants market themselves as "green" or environmentally friendly, said Jay Kandampully, co-author of the study and professor of consumer sciences at Ohio State University.

"It is clear that green practices could be beneficial for restaurants. Customers want their restaurants to be environmentally friendly and say they're willing to pay more for it," Kandampully said.

"It would be a shame if restaurants don't make use of that support."

The study appeared in a recent issue of the journal Tourism and Hospitality Research.

Kandampully and his colleagues surveyed 455 customers of five independent casual dining restaurants in Columbus. Customers were asked a variety of questions about their perceptions of green restaurants.

The results made it clear that restaurant customers are intrigued by the possibility of environmentally friendly restaurants, said Franziska Schubert, a study co-author who conducted the research while a graduate student at Ohio State.

"We thought there would be some interest in green restaurants, but this showed an overwhelming interest in the concept and a willingness to pay for it," Schubert said.

About 65 percent of those surveyed said they would be willing to pay up to 10 percent more to dine at green restaurants, and 20 percent would be willing to pay even more. Only about 15 percent said they would not be willing to pay any more to eat at an environmentally friendly restaurant.

About 70 percent said it is good for restaurants to protect the environment, and nearly half – 48 percent – said dining at green restaurants will be healthier.

Overall, participants in the survey were most interested in restaurants that took actions to protect the environment, such as reducing energy usage and waste and using biodegradable or recycled products.

"The problem is that most of these actions are not visible to diners," Schubert said. "The customers don't see what is happening in the kitchen and that is one reason why people are unsure if a particular restaurant is green."

The second most important green practice to diners, after environmental action, was the use of organic products and serving locally grown food.

Least important to diners was having restaurants donate some of their profits to environmental projects or pay fees to reduce their ecological footprint.

There were some age and gender differences in how diners viewed green practices at restaurants.

Women and those aged less than 35 were more likely than others to believe dining at green restaurants would be healthier.

Those under 35 were also more likely than older people to say it was important for restaurants to use organic foods and to pay fees to reduce their ecological footprints.

Women were much more likely than men to say it was important for restaurants to donate to environmental projects.

There was one thing that nearly all participants agreed on.

"Customers made it clear that the quality of food was most important for them, and they were not willing to compromise quality to eat at a green restaurant," Kandampully said.

Survey participants also expressed confusion about which restaurants in the area were truly "green," he said.

"Restaurants that engage in green practices should market themselves that way, using that fact as a competitive edge," Kandampully said.

"The responses clearly showed that if people knew which restaurants were green, they would consider visiting them."

Kandampully said restaurants that are truly green should look to get certified by organizations such as the Green Restaurant Association or the Rainforest Alliance to show customers of their commitment.

"Restaurants need to clearly communicate with customers about their green practices, if they hope to get a marketing edge," he said.

Other co-authors included Anna Kralj and David Solnet of the University of Queensland in Australia.

The Central Ohio Restaurant Association helped the researchers identify and work with the five restaurants used in the study.

Jay Kandampully | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osu.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>